2013 was an eventful year for Google Apps. A number of notable organizations moved to Google, including Whirlpool, the U.S. Army and the City of Boston, Google Hangouts were revamped and reintroduced as a unified communications system and, most recently, Google Sheets was rebuilt from the ground up.
Google Apps has certainly seen tremendous growth in terms of adoption and functionality and we expect 2014 to be an even bigger year for the platform. Here are our top 5 predictions for 2014.
1. Drive matures in a major way and more organizations move away from Microsoft Office
Adoption of the cloud is fully underway with many organizations even implementing a cloud-first IT strategy. It’s no longer a question of “if,” but “when” the market reaches 100% cloud adoption. In 2013, a number of huge corporations and government entities moved to Google Apps, showing that the platform is truly capable of handling a wide array of use cases, requirements and security concerns.
… Read more →
The following is a summary of a contributed article, which originally appeared on VentureBeat. Read the full article here.
The cloud offers many benefits, but since 2000 there have been three predominant value propositions.
In the early to mid 2000s, companies moved to the cloud for cost savings. Cloud software was cheaper to implement, upkeep and upgrade. But, as the cloud grew more sophisticated and commonplace, software became commoditized and competing on cost alone was impossible. By the mid 2000s to 2010, allowing users to work from anywhere was the cloud’s most appealing benefit. The rise of smartphones and the prevalence of high speed wireless internet encouraged this trend.
Today, working from anywhere is a given in most companies. The cloud’s value proposition today comes from the ability to integrate multiple disparate SaaS applications either through out of the box connections, custom integrations or with the help of a third-party tool.
For more on the cloud’s changing value proposition, read the full article below.
I’ve promoted cloud … Read more →
In a recent survey released by the Electronic Frontier Foundation of the top technology companies, Microsoft fails to comply with a number of data encryption and security recommendations while Google excels on all fronts.
To ensure data security, the EFF recommends technology companies follow protocols in five areas:
1. Encrypt Websites with Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS)
If HTTPs is implemented, communications between a user’s computer and the given website are encrypted.
Google and Microsoft are both compliant.
2. Enable HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS)
However, to ensure the communication remains secure, companies should enabled HTTP Strict Transport Security or HSTS. HSTS uses secure communications to prevent certain attacks if a network pretends that the site visited has asked to communicate insecurely.
Microsoft is non-compliant.
3. Encrypt Data Center Links
This protocol asks companies to encrypt communications between a company’s own cloud servers and their data centers. This precaution ensures data is protected in the case that an attacker has access to physical data links or … Read more →
The following is a guest post from Lee Ho, Vice President of Marketing at Esna.
In a world full of technological innovations and exciting new ventures, it’s baffling that a revolutionary concept like communication-enabled business process (CEBP) gets so little attention from the business community at large. CEBP seeks to transform standard communication capabilities by integrating those capabilities into the regular flow of business. This integration produces a seamless communication channel, thus increasing efficiency and reducing human latency – pretty much a no brainer when it comes to optimizing most business practices.
So, why then is CEBP still a relatively untapped gold mine of efficiency? While CEBP isn’t a new idea, it’s still working to find its place in the rapidly evolving business landscape – a place we feel it rightfully deserves.
With an end-goal of bringing a continuous, high-quality, real-time communications experience to the table across business segments – customers, suppliers, employees, management – it’s hard to understand why so few businesses have yet to embrace this concept.
The Rise of … Read more →
Since Google launched Google Apps in 2006, there’s been considerable growth and adoption of the suite. The last reported numbers state that there are over 5 million organizations on Google Apps with 50 million users and it seems like more organizations go Google everyday – in fact the US Army went Google this week!
We’ve rounded up 47 of the most important stats alluding to the platform’s adoption, growth and future.
Moving to the Cloud
We’ve known for a while that a large shift is underway in the realm of IT. The move to the cloud, first propelled by early adopters and championed by Google, Salesforce.com and others is becoming more and more mainstream.
According to Mark Murphy, an enterprise software analyst at Piper Jaffray, today 9.7% of all computing workloads are run in the public cloud. However, that number is expected to rise to 30.2% in just five years, adding up to 44% annual growth in workloads for the public cloud compared to just 8.9% growth for on-premise computing workloads. Source. In … Read more →
The following is a guest post from Jeff Kaplan. Kaplan is an expert on cloud computing, the Managing Director of THINKstrategies and founder of the Cloud Computing Showplace. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Everywhere you look there are more indications that the corporate world is migrating to a new generation of Cloud-based, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions to respond to a series of unprecedented business challenges. Ironically, many corporate decision-makers are being enticed into adopting these new solutions because of their ease-of-use and economies of scale, but IT organizations are being confronted with a new level of complexity as they try to gain control over their rapidly changing operating environments.
There are a number of issues, which are conspiring against IT organizations trying to keep pace with their business end-users and executives’ escalating demands. First, many of the new Cloud-based, SaaS solutions are being adopted without IT involvement or knowledge. The consumerization of IT or ‘shadow IT’ phenomenon is creating security, compliance, integration and vendor management issues for large-scale enterprises as … Read more →
As Google Apps and other cloud services have evolved so to have Google Apps resellers. These resellers have transformed their businesses to align with new challenges companies moving to the cloud or seeking to implement a full cloud strategy encounter.
Only a few years ago Google Apps resellers seldom did more than assist with migrations to Google Apps and conduct change management training. Now, the leading resellers have evolved into cloud services brokerages (CSBs) providing their customers not only with data migration and user training, but also with custom application development, integration services and assistance building out an overall cloud IT strategy.
History of Google Apps Resellers and the Evolution of CSBs
The Google Apps Reseller program started in 2009 with a pilot group of 50 partners. This group was made up of early adopters and Google Apps evangelists.
Over the last four years, the program has grown immensely and is now comprised of thousands of partners around the world (the last quoted number is around 6,000, but we believe it to be much higher). These … Read more →
After nearly two years of focusing solely on Google Apps, we’ve decided to expand our vision beyond Apps and to the cloud at large. While organizations initially migrate to the cloud to gain collaboration, cost savings and scalability, once there they often find a lack of management and security capabilities. Cloud enabled companies are therefore forced to cobble together multiple management and security tools from various vendors or even build their own custom solutions to simply oversee the applications they rely on every day.
Today, we’re aiming to solve this dilemma by providing a single pane through which IT administrators can manage and secure their entire cloud application stack. To help us do so, we’ve closed a $6 million Series B round of funding from existing investors including Flybridge Capital Partners, Greycroft Partners, TriBeCa Venture Partners and BLH Venture Partners, bringing our total investment to $13.25 million.
This latest investment will go towards growing our existing engineering team to accelerate Google Apps development while also adding a new team dedicated to extending FlashPanel’s functionality to other leading cloud applications.
Remaining Focused on … Read more →
Founded nearly two years ago by seven market-leading software providers, the Cloud Alliance for Google Apps, the only consortium of ISVs in the Google Apps space, aims to share best practices for operating in this ecosystem among its members and raise awareness of the Google Apps platform to the broader public.
When the Alliance was founded, we knew it would play a crucial part in promoting and unifying the ecosystem, but in those early days actually proving the Alliance’s value at large was more challenging. As both BetterCloud and the Alliance matured, we realized there was a scarcity of information regarding Google Apps usage and adoption. Since the Alliance was comprised of seven leading ISVs, we knew we had the reach to survey and uncover information on the space no one had ever published. What resulted was our first annual survey, which has now been downloaded by thousands of people interested in learning more about Google Apps.
The value of the survey was proven to … Read more →
As our user base has steadily grown over the last year, we’ve made a concerted effort to stay in touch with as many customers as possible. Whether that’s through one on one training sessions, phone calls or our quarterly surveys, the success of BetterCloud is directly linked to the relationships we have with our expanding customer base. While ideally we’d like to personally call every FlashPanel customer, nearly 30,000 IT admins, that’s simply not possible. Instead, we’ve found the most efficient way to garner large scale and immediate feedback on our product and cloud adoption is through surveys like this one.
In this survey, we chose to focus on three key areas:
Profiling the Customer Mapping Out the Cloud Application Stack FlashPanel’s Role in Replacing Legacy Technologies
And here are some of the highlights:
The challenges of moving 100% to the cloud are becoming more surmountable and the benefits of doing so have evolved beyond cost considerations. According to customers surveyed, the length of time it will take before we reach full cloud adoption is not far off.
In a very short period, Google Apps has … Read more →